Series Scripture: Luke 3:4-6 As it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: ‘PREPARE THE WAY of the Lord, make his paths straight. Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be made low, and the crooked shall become straight, and the rough places shall become level ways, and all flesh shall see the salvation of God.’ ”

The LORD Has General Blessings For All:

  • Matthew 5:45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

The LORD Has Distinct Blessings For Followers:

  • Exodus 9:4 But the Lord will make a distinction between the livestock of Israel and the livestock of Egypt, so that nothing of all that belongs to the people of Israel shall die.” ’ ”
  • Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.
  • Galatians 4:4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God.
  • Luke 18:28 And Peter said, “See, we have left our homes and followed you.” 29 And he said to them, “Truly, I say to you, there is no one who has left house or wife or brothers or parents or children, for the sake of the kingdom of God, 30 who will not receive many times more in this time, and in the age to come eternal life.

Have you considered how following Jesus has benefitted your life? No following Jesus - you have no idea what you are missing.

Psalm 116:12 What shall I render to the Lord for all his benefits to me?

I cannot begin to repay, so I will live my life in response!

2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. 18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 20 THEREFORE, WE ARE AMBASSADORS FOR CHRIST, GOD MAKING HIS APPEAL THROUGH US. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.

My Response Will Include:

1. A Living Example Of An Adopted Son/Daughter

  • 2 Corinthians 3:2 You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all.
  • no one needs to see a perfect Christian – that would eclipse Jesus!
  • they need to see a transparent son or daughter learning to be a family member, experiencing the benefits that come from a generous Dad

2. The Audible Expression Of My Experience

  • Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
  • we are not called to win argument, convince people of our viewpoint, and be able to answer every question, but rather TESTIFY as a good WITNESS to what we have seen and experienced.
  • 1 Peter 3:15 but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,

3. Frequent & Intentional Invitations To Join His Family

  • Jesus frequently said, "come and follow me"
  • Jesus frequently had meals with sinners, tax collectors, etc and offered invitations to join Him
  • Luke 14:23 And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.

Matthew 4:18 While walking by the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon  (who is called Peter) and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. 19 And he said to them, “Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed him.